Tag «Author: Livingston»

Spin-off Saturdays: Starling Series by Lesley Livingston

Spin-off Saturdays: On Saturdays, I will review a series that is a spin-off series. It is recommended that you read the original series first in order to get the most out of the spin-off series. Here is this week’s offering:

Starling Trilogy is a spin-off of the Wondrous Strange Trilogy

SERIESous’ Top Book Series: Favourite Authors
Series: Starling Trilogy
Author: Lesley Livingston
# of Books: 3 (Starling, Descendant, Transcendent)

This is a spinoff of the Wondrous Strange Series.

Book Order: Chronological
Complete?: Yes
Genre: Young Adult, Paranormal, Norse Legends, Action, Romance, Mythology
Heat Rating: warm
Point of View: Third Person

Thoughts:

Lesley Livingston is one of my must-read authors: I love her work. Her stories always have a fabulous blend of action, romance and awesome background stories of legends or older stories. When I heard that she was writing a spin-off from the Wondrous Strange Series (an all time favourite series of mine), I grabbed a copy as soon as I was able.

I really enjoyed this book and had a hard time putting it down. Mason was a kick-ass heroine and her family story was super interesting. Fennrys wasn’t one of my favourite characters from the Wondrous Strange series but he really grew on me in this one. Like most characters who are in the original series, you often judge them through the eyes of another character. But when the perspective shifts to them in a new series (or even a later book) you really appreciate them as a character.

There was a lot going on in this book so it was never a dull moment! There are a few twists here and there so it wasn’t predictable (BONUS!). I also loved the Norse god mythology in this. It’s something that isn’t as popular in young adult books so it was a nice change from faeries and vampires.

I recommend that you make note of details in this book as it will pay off in seeing why things are happening and they will no doubt influence the rest of the books in the series.

Updated (Dec 7/13): Descendant was absolutely fantastic! What I love about it most is that it doesn’t fall into clichés and I really like Mason. While she may be love sick for Fennrys, it doesn’t weaken her in any way. This book had great plot twists and really builds up for the climax. Super excited to see how this all ends!

Updated (Jan 6/15): I won’t lie, I was a little lost when I started reading Transcendent. Despite my pretty thorough synopsis notes, I still had a hard time grasping everything initially–that`s what happens when you read a sequel book one year later! However, I quickly got into the swing of the things to get enough of the major plot points. But I do know that I would haven enjoyed this final book a lot more if I read it right after Descendant just because all the little things would have been fresh in my mind. All and all, a solid way to end the series and exactly what I was expecting and hoping for! A great series from beginning to end!

Conclusion:

Starling is quite different from Wondrous Strange because of the use of Norse legends instead of the Shakespearian faeries. It is still written in similar style but the characters and plots are completely different. It’s a nice change but fans of the first series will like this one I’m sure. You also don’t have to read the Wondrous Strange Series first, but it will help set some context for this series.

Rating: 5/5

Similar Reads: Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston (Wondrous Strange Trilogy); Stork by Wendy Delsol (Stork Trilogy)

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WARNING: IF YOU HAVE not FINISHED THE Wondrous Strange Trilogy THE FOLLOWING SYNOPSIS HAS SPOILERS!

Synopsis for Starling (from Goodreads):
Mason Starling is a champion fencer on the Gosforth Academy team, but she’s never had to fight for her life. Not until the night a ferocious, otherworldly storm rips through Manhattan, trapping Mason and her teammates inside the school. Mason is besieged by nightmarish creatures more terrifying than the thunder and lightning as the raging tempest also brings a dangerous stranger into her life: a young man who remembers nothing but his name–the Fennrys Wolf. His arrival tears Mason’s world apart, even as she feels an undeniable connection to him. Together, they seek to unravel the secrets of Fenn’s identity as strange and supernatural forces gather around them. When they discover Mason’s family–with its dark allegiance to ancient Norse gods–is at the heart of the mystery, Fennrys and Mason are suddenly faced with a terrifying future.

Set against the gritty, shadowed back-drop of New York City, this first novel in award-winning author Lesley Livingston’s epic Starling Saga is an intoxicating blend of sweeping romance and pulse-pounding action.

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Series Review: Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston

SERIESous’ Top Book Series: #7 of Favourite Series List
Series: Wondrous Strange Trilogy

The spin-off series is called Starling that takes place after these novels

Author: Lesley Livingston
# of Books: 3 (Wondrous Strange, Darklight, Tempestuous)
Complete?: Yes
Genre: Young Adult, Faeries, Shakespeare, Magic, Romance
Heat Rating: cool

Thoughts:

This series is one that I could reread again and again–I actually borrowed all the books from the library and then decided to buy them all because I enjoyed them so much. It was with this series that Lesley Livingston became a must-read author for me.

If you have read some of my other reviews, you know that I am a Shakespeare nut. Anything with his name and I am there; so to pick up this book was a no brainer. I also enjoy books with Faeries (ie. The Wicked Lovely Series which is another personal favourite series) so I was intrigued to how Faeries would be portrayed in this book (as they tend to vary in series). It seemed like an awesome combo so I was excited to begin.

Obviously, I am happy to say that this series did not disappoint! It has everything I enjoy in a series, like action, romance, plot twists and great characters. Each book in the series has a great, solid story. Unlike some series that have weaker books in order to progress, I found that these books built upon each other to reach a final climax. I was never bored with the series because there is enough going on to grab your attention.

I really liked Kelley as the heroine. She was strong, independent and most importantly intelligent. She wasn’t catty or whiney and if she didn’t like something she made ever effort to change it herself. Sonny was fantastic too. A totally swoon worthy hero and I liked the relationship that develops between them. Both characters were consistent in their delivery throughout the series (ie. they didn’t do a 180 in the second book to become a different character) which is a huge bonus for me.

Although Shakespeare plays a big role in the background information of the story, it isn’t necessary to know A Midsummer Night’s Dream by heart to get a feel for the book or understand what is going on. Livingston weaves all her story elements together so well that it’s easy to follow. I really appreciate her ability to weave and create worlds and it’s what makes her work so enjoyable in my opinion.

Conclusion:

A great paranormal young adult read for those who like unpredictable stories. Romance isn’t the primary focus of this novel but neither is Shakespeare. It is mostly a book about Faeries and the Otherworld. I highly recommend getting all three books at once when you plan to read as there is details in earlier books that it is nice to remember when you read the next one.

Rating: 5/5

Similar Reads: Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr (The Wicked Lovely Series) and The Iron King by Julie Kagawa (The Iron Fey Saga) and Starling by Lesley Livingston

Synopsis for Wondrous Strange (from Goodreads):
17 year-old Kelley Winslow doesn’t believe in Faeries. Not unless they’re the kind that you find in a theatre, spouting Shakespeare—the kind that Kelley so desperately wishes she could be: onstage, under lights, with a pair of sparkly wings strapped to her shoulders. But as the understudy in a two-bit, hopelessly off-off-Broadway production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream, wishing is probably the closest she’s going to get to becoming a Faerie Queen. At least, that’s what she thinks… In this fun, urban fantasy, Kelley’s off-stage life suddenly becomes as complicated as one of Shakespeare’s plot twists when a nighttime trip to Central Park holds more than meets the mortal eye.